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Onsemi Invests $2 Billion In Czech Semiconductor Expansion

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Onsemi invested $2 billion to boost semiconductor production in the Czech Republic, enhancing its European capacity amid the EU’s drive for self-sufficiency in critical supplies.

Onsemi, an US-based chipmaker, invests up to $2 billion to boost semiconductor output in the Czech Republic, expanding its European capacity. The company enhances operations in Roznov pod Radhostem, establishing a whole production chain for silicon carbide semiconductors. These chips, used in automotive and renewable sectors, are more expensive than standard silicon but preferred for their energy efficiency, lightweight, and durability. This investment aligns with the European Union’s goal for self-sufficiency in critical supplies.

This investment aligns with the company’s capital expenditure target after announcing about 1,000 job cuts from its 30,000-strong workforce. McKinsey forecasts global semiconductor manufacturing to grow into a trillion-dollar industry by 2030, up from $600 billion in 2021.

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With this investment, the company contributes to the region’s strategic positioning within the EU’s semiconductor value chain. It shows that all EU countries can benefit from the European Chips Act, which will reinforce the semiconductor ecosystem in the EU, ensure the resilience of supply chains, and reduce external dependencies. This is a crucial step for the EU’s technological sovereignty.

Onsemi invests up to $2 billion in a brownfield project in the Czech Republic, marking one of the most significant foreign investments in the country. This follows similar moves by STMicroelectronics in Italy, Intel, and TSMC in Germany. 

The site produces intelligent power semiconductors for energy-efficient applications in electric vehicles, renewable energy, and AI data centres. The COVID-19 pandemic and trade tensions with China highlight Europe’s reliance on Asia for chip supplies, with recent Red Sea shipping disruptions adding to concerns. Production from this investment could start in 2027, according to Simon Keeton, head of Onsemi’s power solutions division. 

The STMicroelectronics plant in Catania costs 5 billion euros and receives a direct government grant of about 2 billion euros. Germany contributes up to 5 billion euros to TSMC’s $11 billion factory in Dresden. With substantial government subsidies, Intel plans to spend 30 billion euros on two chip plants in Germany.

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